Buffalo Wings.

OK, I have a dozen chicken wings chopped up and waiting in the fridge for me to make them. Now, I do lurve me some good Buffalo wings. The problem is I can’t make good Buffalo wings. They’re either not spicy enough, WAY too spicy, too much oil, or just plain ol’ not done right. Recipes online seem somewhat lacking.

So I speak to thee, fellow Dopers. Give me your tried and true simply awesome hotwing recipes! I like a fair amount of heat but not insane amounts. I like Frank’s hot sauce (as far as heat goes), but not Frank’s Xtra Hot Sauce, it’s too hot. I do have all kinds of Texan and Mexican hot sauces I can add for heat.

Alton Brown’s recipe is the best I’ve used. It’s very simple. You just bake the hotwings and then cover them in a sauce made from butter and hot sauce. That way you control the heat yoursel.f.

Use margarine instead of butter (it blends and holds together better). Just melt a big old gob over low heat in a sauce pan, then start adding Frank’s (it pretty much has to be Frank’s) in increments until you’ve got the level of heat you want. That’s all you really need to do for sauce, but a little bit of honey really punches it up and adds a little bit of smack, I find.

Fry the wings (or bake the wings, as mentioned), then toss with sauce.

Basically, it sounds like your issue is controlling the heat, so the way to do that is melt the margarine first, then add sauce a little at a time until you’ve got it where you want it.

Does anyone coat their wings before (and after) they bake them?

I’ve tried it, but the sauce tends to separate during baking.

The way I do it is to take fresh (or thawed) wings and deep-fry at 375 F for 10 to 12 minutes. I then toss the wings to coat (I normally use something called Louisiana Supreme that you can get at places like Dollar Tree) and then bake in a 350 F oven for 6 to 8 minutes, often covering the wings with the sauce. It works with other sauces as well; for instance, we tried the new Franks Sweet and Hot sauce a couple weeks ago. I’ve also used it to make teriyaki wings, BBQ wings, and so on.

The basic ratio is 1:1 margarine to Frank’s Red Hot for medium. (Butter is often used but, as Dio notes, margarine has the better texture, if for want of flavor.) 3:2 or 2:1 for mild. 2:3 or 1:2 for something spicier. I find that if I want it much hotter than this, it’s time to start adding the heat via a truly hot hot sauce or adding actual crushed or powdered hot peppers into the mix. Much more than 1:2 margarine:Frank’s it gets way too acidic for my tastes.

My technique is the classic technique: deep fry, toss with a bit of sauce in a mixing bowl, and serve immediately. I cannot stand wings that have been sitting around and lose their crispiness. That’s half the point to a wing! Even when I order wings, I prefer to order small orders at a time, as by the time I get to the end of a larger order of wings, the sauce is starting to get gloppy and the wings start to get soggy. Blech.

Apparently–and I haven’t tried it yet–that Alton Brown recipe linked to up thread for baking wings is pretty good to keep some of that crispiness. I’ve never baked wings successfully to my liking, so I’m curious how well his technique works.

I don’t make Buffalo wings. Too much trouble. All I do is put the wings in a pan, sprinkle them with salt, and bake them. When they’re done, I toss them with Frank’s Red Hot. They come out the same way each time.

Thanks for the ideas all! Yes, I do have problems with controlling heat. I find when I bake them I still tend to get them too juicy in the middle. What’s a good oil to fry them up in? Does anyone bread them at all?

At 375, the best option is peanut oil. Others will work, but I prefer peanut oil over refined canola or corn oil.

Peanut is best for frying, but it’s too damned expensive for me to use, and I have no problems with using a neutral oil like canola. I don’t bother with checking the temperature–I find that when canola just about starts to smoke (when you see little wisps of it coming off the oil), if I dump the wings then (taking them out of the fridge a half hour or so before frying), it drops the temperature of the oil down to about the right level for a perfectly crisp and well cooked wing. I use either a wok or a Dutch oven on the stovetop for this. Don’t overcrowd the pot, but if you take the oil to near smoking temps, you can fry a decent sized batch without dropping the temperature of the oil too much.

Another tip: dry your wings very thoroughly before frying. For best results, I dry them with paper towels the night before, and then leave them in the fridge in a single layer on a rack. This overnight rest in the fridge gets them even drier, ensuring a perfectly crisp skin.

ETA: In my opinion, there is no need to bread wings. Or, I should say, if you do bread the wings, they are no longer “Buffalo-style” wings in my mind. It infuriates me when I see a menu advertising “Buffalo wings,” and then I get something that’s breaded. That said, I have had decent hot wings that were breaded, but my preference is for a simple, crispy skin without any breading.

mmmm so spicy… messy. mmmmmmm

I prefer a deep fry in peanut oil. Then immediately coat with 1:1 Franks and butter. Bleu cheese is required.

If you want to try breading… and you are going to be frying:

  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 1tbs corn starch
  • lots of salt and pepper

LIGHTLY dust the very dry chicken wings in the flour mixture. Try to get then in the oil as close to dusting as possible. You don’t want the flour mixture and any moisture from the wingy forming a paste. This method produces a nice crispy texture on the wing. I still recommend coating with sauce and eating immediately. With bleu cheese, of course. :slight_smile:

Most of you don’t dust with flour/cornstarch?

I don’t know about “most,” but that’s not a Buffalo wing if you do.

All of my experiments with breading made the wings taste like … fried chicken. For my next batch I’ll try some of the breading suggestions and see how they turn out.

Bleu cheese is a pox on the land. Ranch or nothing.

No. But I also don’t fry. I roast seasoned wings (canola oil, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder) in a 425 convection oven. I use a sheet pan with a rack, to allow for full air circulation and browning, but I still turn the wings over after 15 minutes. This way, my live-in in-laws can enjoy some nicely flavored wings before I coat them.

I add some Dave’s Insanity to my Frank’s/margarine mix to pick up the heat. I’ve made a blue cheese dip in the past, but usually just use Marie’s Super Blue Cheese dressing. Just typing this is putting me in the mood for wings now.

Ranch dressing? On wings? What are you, a communist or something? I bet you put ketchup on hot dogs too.

And you don’t bread wings! You deep fry them from raw, you throw them in a plastic bucket with Franks and butter, shake and serve. Preferably with carrots, celery and a shitty beer of some sort. May I recommend Gennesee Cream Ale.

And they’re not ‘Buffalo Wings’. They’re just ‘wings.’

Good god, my uncle in Niagara would be rolling in his grave, if he was dead.

Seconding this. No frying, just baking. (And, if it’s the recipe I’m thinking of, you steam them for a while first before baking them.) I’ve made this recipe a couple of times and I thought they came out pretty well.

Sadly, even around here ranch dressing is making inroads on wings.

But from the start at Anchor Bar they used margarine. And most places around here fry then bake the wings. It seems to round the flavor out.